I’m a student of Authentic Businesses.
Being at the early stages, I recognize that there’s a lot to learn as I keep going.
However, over the past couple of years, I’ve observed some common trends in what it takes to build such a business.
And so, even though I’m not there yet, here’s my documentation of what I’ve learned from those in front of me, on what it takes to build an authentic business:
For an authentic business, content creation isn’t about clever copy.
As a matter of fact, most authentic businesses start off without being great at writing content or making videos.
But this is not a problem because for them, content creation is all about sharing what you believe from the heart; and using that information to bless people while you are growing and improving as a result.
This course from George Kao is a great asset towards Authentic Content Writing.
Through content, you gradually build a community of people that love and trust you.
They always want to hear from you and love to support your work as much as they can.
Another aspect of community that is vital for an authentic business is that you should consider being part of a supportive group such as a mastermind.
By interacting with other business owners travelling the same journey as you, you have a better all-round experience. Here’s an example of such a group.
Partnerships and collaborations are an excellent way to get yourself out there.
Whether you’ve been in business for 10 years or only 10 minutes, finding and nurturing the right kind of business relationships can multiply the reach and impact of your business.
Even if you’re just starting out, there are lots of things you can do.
If you’d like to learn more about collaborations and how you can work together with other business owners, take a look here.
For authentic businesses, at the center of it all is your willingness and ability to form meaningful connections.
If you’re going to share content from the heart, engage in a community, and collaborate with people; then there has to be a connection between you and the people.
Remember — You can’t force a connection. If you do, it’ll become strained and inauthentic.
So, don’t be in a hurry; ensure you really take the time to connect with people for who they are.
We all make mistakes; but how open are you to receiving feedback?
I personally love to be corrected; it means I’m learning and improving.
I’ve made it a practice to ask clients for feedback on a very regular basis; and this is helping me get better — both in my work & service to them; but also just getting better as a person.
If you will build an an authentic business, be willing to stay humble and open to feedback — from your clients, partners, and coach(es).
This is by far the most challenging aspect of building an authentic business.
It’s easy to get excited about something new and start it right away; but how do you stay consistent? How do you continue even when it gets boring and feels like a chore?
As my mentor would ask, can you be creative on a schedule? Are you willing to show up even when you’re not inspired to do the work?
That, my friend, is the secret to consistency.
And if you stay consistent, you’re definitely on your way to creating something amazing — both for yourself and the people you serve.
Finally, have compassion.
Start with yourself, your family/friends, and then extend to those you serve (your clients, partners, and overall audience).
You see, people with a heart-based business tend to give too much of themselves to their clients; at the expense of care & compassion for themselves.
It’s not wrong to give your best to your clients. As a matter of fact, you owe it to them & should definitely work hard to offer the best support you can to them.
However, don’t do this at the expense of your sleep, your health, or your intimate relationships. If you fall sick and can no longer support your clients, who have you helped by being sick?
Your clients need you.
Your family needs you.
And crucially, you need you.